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I will be camping and fishing on Hazel Creek March 13-18. Can anyone give me some idea of the flies that I will need? I tie real slowly so I'm trying to get a good head start. Any suggestions will be much appreciated.
Try some bead head (black bead) copper johns, sizes 16-20 or so. Hare's ear with and without beads sizes 12 and smaller may be a safe bet as well. Your best bet is to keep a close eye on the fishing report posted on the LRO site during Feb. I'm sure others will have additional patterns they have had success with. Good luck.
01-18-2006, 12:11 AM
Speaking of Hazel Creek, I heard somewhere that there is a way to hike from say, clingman's dome to hazel creek? I know it's not a short hike, and I don't remember for sure if it is clingman's dome or some other place. Does anybody know what I'm talking about? Please correct me if what I heard is wrong. . Thanks for the help.
01-18-2006, 12:54 AM
You are correct, if you hike about 4 or 4 1/2 miles west of Clingman's on the AT, a trail heads off to the south towards Hazel, I don't remember the name of the trail right now but I believe it connects to the Hazel Creek trail. This is a trip that I've been thinking about for a while. Maybe making a loop to hit Forney also, it would make a great week-long trip. That would be an intense hike back up though :o 8-)!!!
The trail that drops off th AT and hits Hazel is Welch Ridge trail. I went up there solo one day, I ended up backing out and heading back up Welch Ridge and on up to Silers Bald to spend the night. I could tell it was going to be too tough to go all the way to Hazel, and fish, and then try to get back up to Silers to camp. Thats the problem, there is no camping permited any where on upper Hazel creek. You would have to go all the way to Bone Valley, I think, in order to camp. I think this trip would only be fesible if you had a couple of days and a shuttle at the lake. I let the newly opened brookie water skew my judgement as I was looking at my map ,at home, before my trip. If you could camp at the cascades it would be no problem. Haveing to come all the way back up to Silers to spend the night, is a big problem. For me anyway. :)
01-18-2006, 01:42 PM
Jack, you lucky guy. Great time to be on Hazel Creek. I would have a bunch of Quill Gordons, Blue Quills or any gray flies in sizes #12 and #14. Parachute Adams will work. Byron
01-18-2006, 03:09 PM
Thanks for the replies. I figured finding a shelter close would be a problem. Like yourself Jay, the draw of the open brookie stream caught my attention, finding a place to camp hadn't crossed my mind yet. haha
Sorry this is late; forgot id/pw for new bb. There is a campsite above Bone Valley, #82 Calhoun. I do not know if anyone suggested taking the boat from Fontana ramp across to the trailhead of Hazel Creek, and hiking up. Last time I went it was $30 round trip; only pay for the trip in and back is covered. This is the only way I have ever gone in, and works OK for an old fart. I do not have the phone # for the ramp, but there is only one dock. Call and set it up before arriving, and that time of year I would think you could go at your leisure. Hazel is a magical place. I like Cold Spring Branch, and have caught one of each species more than a few times. Are probably brookies up Hazel past Calhoun; I have cached there, after hiking up from Bone, and fished upstream. Boulders get a bit much above there, but that is just my age talking. Please post info about trail when you return; my last trip the main bridge was bent and the trail badly rutted coming from Fontana. Understand bridge fixed, and that should have allowed USPS to do some maintenance on the trail. Have a good trip. HW3
02-05-2006, 04:20 AM
We are planning to fish Hazel in April.
We also thought about jumping off at Clingmans.
Can you leave your vehicle at the parking area?
also how is the hike ?
I plan on at least two nights backcountry,and the wife and son will be with me.
They are strong hikers but if the trail is rough I may plan for a third night.
02-05-2006, 10:04 AM
I've left a truck at the Clingman's Dome parking lot for as long as three days without a problem. The rules could have changed since then though. I consider the trail rough. When I was younger I did a twelve mile hike into Forney Creek with an overloaded pack and it about killed me. Byron :-X
02-06-2006, 10:13 AM
Justatroutbum - My best advice would be to contact the park service to check on the time limit for parking. I cannot see that it would be a problem, as that is a jump off point for backcountry trips frequently...
BTW - I was on that trip with Byron - we were all dead, but it was SO worth it....Will never, ever forget the exhilaration of reaching the dome parking lot after having come up from campsite 71 on Springhouse branch and then Forney Ridge Trail.... :P
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